Factors related to the development of myelopathy in patients with cervical ossification of the posterior longitudinal ligament

H. Chang, K-J. Song, H-Y. Kim, B-W. Choi


This study evaluates factors related to myelopathic symptoms in patients with ossification of the posterior longitudinal ligament (OPLL). A total of 87 patients with OPLL were included. Of these, 53 (Group I) had no symptoms or presented with neck pain and radiculopathy and 34 (Group II) had myelopathic symptoms. Gender, age, and history of trauma were evaluated in the two groups. The range of movement of the cervical spine was measured using plain radiographs. The number of involved segments, type of OPLL, and maximal compression ratio were analysed using CT and signal change in the spinal cord was evaluated using MRI.

The patients’ age was found to be significant (p = 0.001). No difference was found between gender and the range of movement in the two groups. The maximum compression of the spinal canal showed a difference (p = 0.03). The signal change of the spinal cord was different between the two groups. In patients with OPLL of the cervical spine, myelopathic symptoms are not related to the range of movement or the number of involved segments.


  • No benefits in any form have been received or will be received from a commercial party related directly or indirectly to the subject of this article.

  • Received December 27, 2011.
  • Accepted March 21, 2012.
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